Lessons From Collapse

When the Soviet Union collapsed, it did not descend into chaos or have a long period where no one was in charge. It was a process that began with the power struggle between Mikhail Gorbachev and Boris Yeltsin. This power struggle undermined the power of the party and eventually the government. Into the void flowed a new source of power and authority, the oligarchs. These were men with control of key assets who backed Yeltsin’s privatization plans for the economy.

Those oligarchs did not spring from nothing. Some were key party figures who had controlled aspects of the Soviet economy, but most were privateers who operated in the shadow economy of the Soviet system. They held posts in the Soviet system but had extensive contacts in the criminal underground. As the power of the state declined, the power of the underwound economy grew. When the system collapsed, they became the power centers providing control of the country.

This was not unique to the Soviet system. Whenever power begins to wane, alternative centers of power begin to flourish. There is a period in which the real power exists in these distributed power centers, but the façade of the old system remains. Collapse is merely the formal recognition of reality. Germany in the interwar years is another example of what happens when there is a power vacuum. The fascists did not spring from nothing. They had roots in German history and culture.

The Western Roman Empire is probably the best example of the process of collapse and what follows. For a long time, the empire was mostly a fiction. The daily life of the people was controlled by the local powers, the large landowners. These local authorities had power through ownership of land and authority through the administration of the law and regulation of local economics. They even supplied local security in addition to providing men to fight in the legions.

The latifundia was what we would think of today as a plantation. It was the closest thing to agribusiness in the ancient world. It was a large parcel of land worked by slaves for the purpose of export. By the late stages of the empire, these enterprises were common throughout the empire. After the empire, they became the basis of what we understand to be feudalism. The slaves became peasants, and the landowners became the feudal lords controlling the administration of Western Europe.

There was a lot more going on at the end of the Western Roman Empire, but a critical and necessary element was the rise of distributed power centers. Like the ethnic gangsters in the Soviet Union, these agricultural enterprises initially filled in the gaps of the system to keep it functioning. In time they began to rival the power of the empire and when the empire collapsed, they filled the void left behind. The resulting system was built around those local centers of power.

Just as there is a point at which a number of grains of sand becomes a pile of sand, there is a point where the decentralized power centers go from subservient to the central authority to rivaling the central authority. There is a paradox at work in that we can know this point exists but can never identify it with certainty. How many grains of sand constitutes a pile? At what point do people look first to the oligarch for leadership rather than the central authority?

It is a useful question to consider, because there was a point of no return in the Soviet Union just as there was in the Western Roman Empire. Many of those oligarchs in Russia were just the guys who noticed it first. Mikhail Fridman was active in the underground economy in the later years of the Soviet Union and quickly moved to the newly privatized economy as soon as it was possible. Like most of the oligarchs, he was an early adopter who saw the writing on the wall.

In other words, the men who would eventually become the oligarchs after the fall of communism were the first to see that the old system was doomed and something else was coming to replace it. They did not know or care what was coming. They just wanted to profit from the chaos. In fact, when the opportunity arose, they promoted the chaos, backing Yeltsin over Gorbachev because it was good for business. They profited from the collapse before anyone saw the collapse coming.

In current year America, this is relevant because it suggests that the American empire has been in collapse for a long time know. The rise of the financial oligarchs in the late-1980’s and 1990’s was one sign. The rise of Silicon Valley oligarchs as a rival power center to Washington is another. The assault on small business and the middle class by the combined power of the oligarchs and the political class is analogous to the late years of the Soviet system.

In other words, the American empire may already be in collapse. The geezers in Washington are allowed to pretend they are in charge as it benefits the oligarchs, but they have no real power. Legislation is written by the army of scribes known as lobbyists and think tanks, underwritten by the oligarchs. Elections are determined by the money and media supplied by those same oligarchs. The real power lies in boardrooms and villas, while the political system is just a show.

The Soviet and Roman examples suggest such arrangements never last as reality eventually forces its way to the front. In Russia, the oligarchs were brought to heel by the one universal source of power. Vladimir Putin, with the support of the intelligence community and the military was able to reassert civil control of Russia. The oligarchs still exist, but enough have been killed, exiled, or jailed to make sure the rest know who wields the real power in the country.

This is the other shoe to drop in the American empire. The intelligence services have real power, as we saw with the FBI efforts to overturn the 2016 election. The military has real power but lacks real leadership. Their willingness and ability to thwart Trump’s efforts to get out of Syria and Afghanistan should be of concern. Somewhere in the officer ranks there is a man with the skill and desire to change the relationship between the military and the decaying civil control.

Historical analogies are never perfect and are useful only in comparing the broad outlines of times and places. A smooth landing for the empire is not guaranteed any more than Caesarism is a certainty. The military could blunder the empire into a war it cannot win and destroy its credibility in the process. A financial collapse could lead to a popular revolt against the oligarchs. Of course, there is the looming demographic crisis that will bring unimaginable social upheaval.

Even so, what history is telling us is that the American empire is well past the point where reform is possible. It is past the point where the decaying system of imperial control can expect to outlive its current operators. The system is on life support and powerful interests are evolving in response to this reality. The collapse is now certain, but the timing is what is unknown. Another lesson of history here is that no one saw the Soviet collapse coming. The end is always a surprise.


The crackdown by the oligarchs on dissidents has had the happy result of a proliferation of new ways to support your favorite creator. If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link.   If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


State Of Fear

There are many theories as to why the managerial class of America enthusiastically embraces the nutty social fads. California now has a law requiring “gender neutral” toy aisles in stores, for example. One crazy putting this into a bill is understandable, but why did everyone else go along with it? Why does anyone go along with the loopy idea of gender at all? It is not a real thing. Humans are male and female. Everyone has known this for thousands of years.

This is just one example, but the pattern is always the same. Certainly, some do it out of fear of losing face. The oriental nature of the managerial class is easily missed, but the whole face saving thing is where you see it. That is not a normal quality of Northern European people. It is what you see in a small, tightly knit people, but it is a real thing in our managerial class. They fear being seen as outside the current cultural norms of their class, so everyone plays along.

You can really tell this when you run into someone who is in the habit of announcing her pronouns in her workplace. The low level people are most prone to peer pressure, so they jump on these fads with as much enthusiasm as they can muster. The trouble is she still interacts with normal people. When she breaks out the pronouns around a normal, she has the look you see with people struggling with mental illness. She is not sure if what she is saying is what she is thinking.

This is how a minority within the managerial class is able to exert so much power over the rest of the class. That California requirement on toy aisles is no doubt the product of a lone crazy, but fear of exclusion prevented everyone else from speaking out against an obviously insane idea. No one wants to be the one who is seen rejecting the morality of the whole. In a world where the most insane ideas get embraced, who wants to risk opposing this nutty idea?

Even so, the managerial system selects for conformity, but it also allows for the crazies who cook up these ideas. In other words, it selects for a conformity that makes exception for anti-social behavior and it selects for people who are always looking to undermine the dominant culture. Put another way, the personality type most prized is the sadistic subversive with a passion for enforcement. The most perverted people are the most highly regarded in our ruling class.

Another angle to this, perhaps, is that the general belief system of the managerial class is highly conformist. The reason is the people at the top have no natural authority to legitimize their positions. The result is a rigid culture that allows for very little creativity and originality. The exception is when it comes to offending the normal people of society, which is what separates the managerial class from everyone else. You can be weird as long as it offends the normals.

The resulting culture is one that is extremely intolerant of deviation, yet desperate for innovated ways to undermine tradition. The reason these cultural fads are increasingly ridiculous is they are running out of things to smash. When you have already put gay men in jock straps on parade floats and made everyone remain silent about it, finding something more offensively ridiculous is not easy. They jumped on drag queen story hour out of desperation for something new.

The austere conformity is not seen by those who operate outside the domains of the Cloud People, so the quiet desperation is not obvious. Venture inside and what will be most striking is the humorlessness. People smile and laugh a little, but there is an uncanny valley quality to it. They laugh like people who read about how humans laugh from time to time. Say something intended as a joke and they will look at one another for permission to laugh at what the alien said.

The state of fear within the managerial class cannot be underestimated. The ritualized sacrifice of that football coach over his heresy is not intended for the Dirt People the NFL preys upon. That was for the Cloud People. In a world where ritualized human sacrifice is accepted as normal, fear of violating the rules, even by accident, is a very real concern for these people. The threat of exile works the same as Stalin’s gulag worked in the Soviet Union.

This is why no one in the media ever asks the obvious questions when the various talking robots are put out for question and answer periods. A group of normal people in the White House press room would cause the face plate of Jen Psaki to fall off by coordinating their questions and tangling her up in her lies. This never happens because normals are never allowed inside. The people allowed inside know they can easily be replaced by actors if they get out of line.

That was the point of the Kamala Harris video. Not only did they use child actors, but Harris also clearly performed like a well-trained actress. To normal people it is just more evidence that these people are sociopaths and liars. Inside the world of politics, it is a message. There are plenty of unemployed actors willing to play politician, reporter and so on, so make sure you know your lines before filming. Democracy is just the theater portion of the managerial system that rules America.

A ruling class rooted in fear of deviation but permitted to undermine that which makes their existence possible is not one that can last. We are seeing this with the growing economic crises. No one dares suggest anything other than what is being done, so they are frozen in place, hoping for a miracle. The Afghanistan debacle is another example of how extreme conformity results in disaster. No one dared question the plan or adjust it on the fly, so the plan just slammed into the rocks of reality.

The is the crisis of today. The ossified geezer class at the top of the system have insulated themselves against all possible reform. They rule their system through fear and manufactured consent. The only relief for the people in it is the orchestrated subversions like gender neutral toy aisles. Like starving men fighting for crumbs, they jump at these opportunities at something resembling life. Subversion is the bit of sunlight that comes through their prison windows.


The crackdown by the oligarchs on dissidents has had the happy result of a proliferation of new ways to support your favorite creator. If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link.   If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


Fruit Of The Poisoned Tree

Note: The Monday Taki column is up. The topic this week is the increasingly familiar and obvious Jim Snow laws of America. Behind the green door we have the weekly Sunday podcast where I rant and rave about the world.


In every form of human organization there are layers of responsibility. The simplest way of expressing it is that at the top there is always the boss who is the guy making the important decisions for the organization. Everyone else, in one fashion or another, takes orders from the boss and carries out the orders.  Always at the bottom are people who just do what they are told. The vertical arrangements are one of the truths of work life that everyone just accepts without much thought.

More formally, at the top layer of an organization, like a business, are the big decision makers for the organization. Below them are the policy makers. They take the big initiative and turn it into rules and plans. Below them are the people who make those rules and plans into reality. This is the layer most people inside and outside the organization see. They instruct the bottom layer of the organization, train them and making sure they follow through on their orders.

The important part of this arrangement is that everyone in the organization understands their role within the organization. The private in a rifle platoon has to understand that his role is to follow the orders given him by is squad leader or platoon leader. His job is not to determine strategy or decide on objectives. Similarly, the guy on the shop floor has to know his duty is to perform the role he is assigned at a workstation. Otherwise, the organization breaks down and fails to operate as intended.

At the bottom this is rarely a problem, as the people at the bottom are well aware of their status in the hierarchy. The people at the top, of course, know they are at the top of the hierarchy and what that means. The trouble comes in the middle layers where the people tend to be the most ambitious and most prone to overstepping their bounds, hoping to impress the boss. They can also be overly cautious, fearful of getting blamed for doing something wrong and losing status in the organization.

This is where the culture of the organization plays a decisive role. A company with a good corporate culture will have a management layer full of people who not only know their roles but embrace them in the context of the larger organization. A good military culture is one where the officers respect the chain of command, but also understand mission priorities and the need to improvise when necessary. Good organizational culture is what makes or breaks an organization.

This is also where we see the inherent problem of democracy. The basic premise of democratic systems is one man one vote. That means every vote is equal, which is another way of saying that every opinion is equally valid. In the political sense, it means the opinion of the bum counts the same as the opinion of the businessman who volunteers at the church on weekends. The bum’s vote counts for the same as the vote of the man committed to his community.

Democracy flies in the face of everything we know about human organization, because it rejects the natural hierarchy we see everywhere. Worse yet, it gnaws away at the basic understanding of human relations. Those middle-managers in a well-run company are happy to be in their roles. They may have ambition, but they also accept reality and know that their ambitions are linked to that reality. The morality of democracy undermines the very basis of their relationship to the whole.

This is why modern democracies are full of people confused about their place in society as well as the role others play. There is a whole genre of videos on-line where people confront store managers about things no reasonable person should expect them to know or control. We have the opposite, as well, where people at the lowest ranks of management carry on like they are shot callers, pushing people around and going well beyond the limits of their role.

Imagine a factory where everyone thinks they should have a say in what the factory makes and how much they make of it. The guy who cleans the workstations gets the same vote as the sales manager and the plant manager. Imagine a platoon where the men vote on their missions and collectively decide on their targets. It sounds like madness because it is madness. That factory would go out of business in a hurry and that military unit would quickly become a criminal gang.

This is, however, how the West has decided to run their societies. Now, it is true that the real shot callers hide in the shadows, using the institutions to manipulate public opinion and coerce people into their positions. They do so, however, while promoting the idea that everyone’s opinion is the same and every opinion counts. On the one hand they promote chaos, while on the other they try to maintain order. It is no wonder that the liberal democracies are shaking themselves to pieces.

The temptation is to blame the internet for allowing the stupid to have easy access to the public square, but in reality, the internet is just a facilitator. According to the tenets of democracy, Twitter is the goal, not a terrible accident. Imagine the town square full of howling lunatics and you get the prefect image of democracy. Social media made real is a public riot but is also exactly what you get when everyone stops accepting their role in the hierarchy and thinks they are a king.

Fundamentally, all forms of democracy are as hostile and contrary to the nature of man as all forms of communism. Both communism and democracy assume something about people that can never be true. That is, all men are equal. This is obviously false in the simplest organization and even more so in the most complex. Just as communism has always ended in disaster, democracy has always ended in murder. Both delusions are the fruit of the same poison tree named equality.


The crackdown by the oligarchs on dissidents has had the happy result of a proliferation of new ways to support your favorite creator. If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link.   If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


Emotional Appropriation

One of the weird aspects of this age is how important people appropriate the emotions and feeling of others and make them their own. They will make statements about their feelings on a subject, but those feelings are not really their feelings because they cannot actually be experiencing the feelings in questions. Our Cloud People have normalized emotional appropriation as a way of projecting to the Dirt People that they have genuine human emotions.

The easy example here is the public person who has a rare moment of honesty and posts what they really think on Twitter. This sets off the familiar drama on-line in which people rush to their favorite platform to express their outrage. The fact that they have no reason to care, much less be outraged, goes unnoticed. Eventually, the director of this drama tells the star to waddle out on stage and issue an apology. In that apology, the star claims to feel things that cannot be felt.

For example, they always say something about feeling remorse for the pain they have caused, despite the fact this is impossible. You can feel remorse for causing harm to an actual human, but not for anonymous zombies on-line. Further, the people claiming to have been harmed were not harmed. In fact, the opportunity to play along in the drama was the highlight of their day, maybe their life. Like the famous people, they got to appropriate the feelings of others.

None of the emotions expressed in these offense-apology dramas can be real, because it does not involve real victims or real offenses. The star of these shows often says, “I apologize to those I have offended” but the statement itself says they are not sure who they could have offended. You can only apologize to real humans to whom you have committed real harm. An apology to imaginary people is an imaginary apology for an imaginary harm. It is all just emotional appropriation.

A recent example of this is the football coach caught dancing with a woman not his wife after a football game. For some reason, football fans were “outraged” as if we have suddenly been thrust into Victorian times. The owner of the team that employs the coach was scandalized, calling it “inexcusable”. The coach then apologized to imaginary people for something no one, other than maybe his wife, should have an interest, much less an emotional investment.

Another common example of emotional appropriation is the Cloud Person taking pride in something that does not exist. Politicians will talk about different communities, for example, as if they are rural villages with a well-defined character. The “trans community” is a current favorite. The politicians will claim to be proud of their support for the trans community. You cannot take pride in something you had no part in creating and you cannot be proud of something that does not exist.

Pride, ironically enough, is one of the most important emotions for our modern emotional appropriators. College presidents are always talking about how proud they are of their community. They are just hired fundraisers who drift from job to job, never creating anything but trouble. Yet, they will take pride in the work of others as if they had a hand in it. The fixation on the sin of pride by the Cloud People is one of those things that reveals much about our age.

The sin of pride, for those deprived of proper religious training, is considered a rebellion against God. The person committing this sin attributes to himself the honor and glory that is due to another, usually God. Since our Cloud People worship the arc of history, it sort of makes sense that they inappropriately take pride in that which is the product of generations of history. Pride has been called the cancer of the soul. It is considered the first and most serious of the deadly sins.

One reason for these weird public displays of emotion is that we have shifted from a male dominated culture to a female dominated one. Maintaining a stiff upper lip, especially in public, is a male attribute. Women, on the other hand, have always been encouraged to show emotion. This is why all public people feel a need to show emotion in public. It is how they project their piety. In order to gain status, you must show how much you care, which often means blubbering in public.

Another issue here, though, is the people who now dominate public life are not capable of real human emotion. They don’t do things, for example, for which they could take genuine pride. They don’t have a concern for the welfare of others. This is the age of the public sociopath. Caring about real people is a sucker’s play in this age, so the ambitious try to avoid it. The result is we get these weird dramas where the Cloud People appropriate the emotions of others.

In the novel Brave New World, humans in the imagined future went to something called the Feelies, which was a theater-like experience. They would be simulated to feel strong emotions via the use of various inputs. The people went to these things to feel things like grief and anger, because they had no way of experiencing these emotions in their regular lives. The combination of their genetic engineering and taking the happiness-producing drug called Soma blocked normal emotions.

Something similar happens today. The Cloud People are mostly sociopaths at this point, incapable of having normal human emotions. The general population, however, has been plucked from normal human community and thrust into a synthetic solution of consumerism that does not allow for the normal human experience. In order to keep the system running, the Cloud People are constantly creating synthetic emotions they can display and use to stimulate emotion in the Dirt People.

This is the appeal of mass media in general and social media in particular. Just look at the name “social media”. It is a replacement for the normal human socialization that would occur in natural human communities. The most emotionally unstable people are intensely on-line. They lack the normal structure of human community to keep them balanced so they seek an alternative on their phone. The result is a population on a roller-coaster of emotional appropriation.

Emotion is not much different from what comes from taking stimulants. The first hit is the best hit. The most intense emotions we feel in our lives are at the extremes, so the emotionalism of this age grows more intense. Public emotion in a liberal democracy is the opiate of the people. Therefore the emotional appropriation becomes more prolific and the drama more intense. We are shaking ourselves to pieces in an effort to feel that which has been normal for the life of man.


The crackdown by the oligarchs on dissidents has had the happy result of a proliferation of new ways to support your favorite creator. If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link.   If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


The Nature of Tyrants

In the West, the morality of the state has been determined by how much or how little it respects the basic rights of its citizens. During the Cold War this was a critical measure used to justify foreign policy. The American government claimed it was within its rights to overthrow South American governments that got too chummy with the Soviets because they would endanger the rights of their people. On the other hand, they would back anti-communist dictators because they were better than communists.

There was a lot of lying and dissembling on this issue, but the principle was important to Western governments, so they made a big show of it. In America, for example, this meant protecting property rights from the excesses of the state. As a practical matter, it meant the state had to prove they had good reason for violating your rights before the court would permit them from doing it. They had to get a warrant, for example, before tapping your phone or riffling through your papers.

Government is always a blunt instrument and men are not angels so to avoid office holders and bureaucrats from abusing the rights of the people they first had to demonstrate there was a compelling government interest in declaring your backyard a wetland or banning a certain activity. Put another away, it was the duty of the government to make the affirmative argument. Citizens did not have to justify their rights to exercise them. They were assumed.

Property is a useful metric in this regard because it is simple and the economic basis of Western society. Even in feudalism property rights were respected, because ownership was what made the system possible. The right to speak out or organize are up for debate to some degree, but the right to own the fruits of your labor is the starting point for social organization in the West. It is what makes communism alien and why it has always been the domain of outsiders and subversives.

In the United States, property rights barely exist now. This story about the Feds smashing into a private business and taking their stuff sounds like something from North Korea or maybe Australia. For reasons they feel no need to explain, they broke into a private bank vault and stole the property of the customers using the service and refuse to return the property. By any reasonable moral standard, this is theft and worse, it is legal plunder. The state is plundering the citizens.

Like all criminals, conmen and sociopaths, the state is throwing up a dust storm of legal points to distract from the moral point at the center. In a just society, is it appropriate to take the goods of the people without first demonstrating that the state has a reason for seizing that property? The answer is obvious. By Western standards, this is immoral and the sort of thing that justifies revolution. In fact, it is this sort of behavior that justifies the very existence of the United States.

This is not an atypical story. The Federal government now routinely seizes the property of citizens without justification. Nick Fuentes, the young firebrand nationalist, had his bank accounts seized by the government. They have not explained why they took his money, and they refuse to even acknowledge it. One day he had money in his account and the next day it was cleaned out. The bank finally told him it was the government, but it took them weeks to get around to telling him.

The general violation of property rights is now the norm. The tech oligarchs, for example, strongly oppose private property. If they don’t like what you are saying on your website, they will steal your domain name. They will collude to limit your ability to hold a job or have a bank account. What used to be a sacred right of all people is now up for debate with an unelected oligarchical class as the judge and jury. What is yours is theirs and what is theirs is theirs and they own everything.

It is tempting to call this feudalism as people have a cartoonish understanding of the term and the times from which we get the term. The fact is the typical feudal lord had a greater respect for property rights than anyone in authority today. The authority of the lord was rooted in property rights. He respected the rights of small landowners, because he expected his lord to respect his rights the same way. The upper cast of modern society has no respect for the people in the least.

This is the critical thing to understand about the modern authoritarian. They no longer respect what used to be the common morality of the West. The ultimate constraint on feudal excess was that universally accepted morality with regards to property, the law and governance. Most people were illiterate, even the rulers, so the letter of the law was not paramount. It was the spirit of the law that mattered. In fact, it was this respect for the spirit of the law on which authority rested.

Today, the people in charge have no respect for the law or the concept of law, so their agents just do as they please. In fact, they take pride in trampling the rights of the people, because it pleases their masters. The goons prosecuting the January 6th protestors, for example, take a sadistic pleasure in the torment they are inflicting on the people caught in their trap. Their intentional cruelty has become a positional good, something that elevates them in the eyes of the oligarchs.

The Declaration of Independence is a remarkable document that is mostly remembered for the opening lines. Even though those lines have been abused by the very tyrants that now rule over us, the document is a remarkable expression of Western thought and Anglo-Saxon morality. After the long bill of indictment against the king, a list familiar today, there is this line. “A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.”

The beauty of that line is that it qualifies the moral depravity of the tyrant by juxtaposing it against the nature of a free people. A people who sit idly by as their rulers trample their ancient rights are getting the government they deserve. A free people, in contrast,  must hold their prince to the highest moral standard. It is immoral for them to do otherwise, as it violates that which defines them as free people. Every tyrant issues his own death warrant to the free people he seeks to oppress.


The crackdown by the oligarchs on dissidents has had the happy result of a proliferation of new ways to support your favorite creator. If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link.   If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


Female Trouble

Note: The Monday Taki post is up. This week it is a nice companion piece to the regular Monday posting. With Halloween approaching, it is a good time to focus on witches and the trouble they are causing. That and it will sell a few books for Ed Dutton. For those with a soul, the Sunday podcast is up behind the green door.


Early in the Covid panic it was clear that some people were embracing the panic for reasons that had nothing to do with public health. The harridan assaulting people in the grocery store over the bizarre new rules was doing it because suddenly she had a purpose to her life. This was starkly obvious with the Michigan governor, Gretchen Whitmer, who made herself harridan-in-chief.  All of a sudden, inconsequential people had purpose and meaning to their lives.

The infamous TikTok videos featuring chubby nurses in scrubs dancing around on empty hospital floors had a similar motivation. White women with mundane lives working in hospitals were suddenly “front line workers” in the war against the great plague threatening humanity. Most of the women working in hospitals just went about their lives but many suddenly saw themselves in a different role. They were no longer just faceless nurses doing menial work. They were heroes.

Of course, another big driver of the live action role playing was the urban legends being traded on social media. In the early days it was not uncommon for someone to claim she knew several people who died from the virus. Statistically that was like saying you knew several people killed by dwarfs. Even today it is rare for someone to know someone who actually died from Covid much less many people. Even so, it became a common sighting on social media.

For many people, Covid and the drama surrounding it quickly became the purpose of their lives, giving them a reason to get up in the morning. The Covid skeptic, in fact, was largely a creation of the people embracing the panic. The panic players needed a foil, someone at whom they could direct the lines “Don’t you understand that people are dying!” when on the Nextdoor app. The people happy to be left alone were dragged into the Covid drama to be the needed villain of the story.

You see this with the vaccination business. For as long as we have understood vaccinations, it was known to be a defense against you getting infected. If you got the vaccine you were protected. It did not matter if everyone around you was not vaccinated, because you were vaccinated. That was the point of the vaccine, but that has been changed. Vaccines are now a collective good so the unvaccinated can be the needed villain in this drama.

The latest turn in this weird game is a new phenomenon in which women are sure they have Covid but they keep testing negative. The women suffering from this new and dangerous malady in the war against Covid describe it as “spooky” because they really want to test positive, but they keep testing negative. What is clear about the women afflicted with this new plague is they are heavily invested in Covid. In their time of greatest need, Covid is letting them down.

What is going on here, of course, is something that has been happening in small ways for some time. We have an abundance of unattached females in the population desperate for attention. They jump on every fad in the hope of making themselves the star of some minidrama related to it. You can probably mark the Virginia rape hoax as the beginning of this pattern. A crisis invented by political grifters was made real by a couple of women desperate for attention.

It is tempting to blame this on mass media. Ten years ago, this Covid panic could not have happened as we have far fewer intensely on-line people. The SARS and Swine flu epidemics are proof of it. In those outbreaks, social media was still in its infancy and mass manipulation with it had not been mastered. Those epidemics were serious and required a public response, but they never become full blown panics like Covid, because the tools were not available to do it.

In reality, social media is a symptom. Stand around in public and look at what people are doing as they wait. You will see far more women banging on her mobile device than men, unless the area is full of mothers. The moms will be tending to their children and gossiping with the other moms. There are plenty of men intensely on-line, but it is usually directed at things like sports. For women, they are on-line for the drama and the growth of social media has been in response to this demand.

This suggests that the witch problem, as described by Ed Dutton, is not entirely a problem of selection and biology. That is, the potential for witchery is a constant feature of Western societies that can be unlocked under certain conditions. We have not been selecting for witchery, but rather creating an environment that summons forth the demon from the female population. The internet is turning into a doomsday device that summons exaggerates the worst elements of humanity.

Worse yet, history does not offer an easy answer. In better times, a round of witch trials and the liberal use of the scold’s bridle would do the trick. In this crisis, the witches have already taken control. That means the witch trials are of men who failed to properly compliment a female coworker who was feeling blue. She then goes to the head witch in human resources and the victim is dragged in for interrogation. Instead of witch trials we have warlock trials.

Of course, the hunt for invisible Nazis and white supremacists is another modern form of witch hunting, mostly led by women. You have a sprinkling of socially retarded males in the group, but the main players in the hunt for insurrectionists are hysterical females imagining themselves being ravaged by a Nazi. In the old days, the witch problem was quickly addressed, so they never got hold of the levers of power. Today, the executive suits are littered with brooms.

Putting all of that aside, what Covid has revealed is that we not only have female trouble, but we cannot ignore it forever. The madness unleashed over the last year is finally showing up in practical ways. Prices for essentials are spiking, car production has stopped due to shortages. Shortage of things are turning up again, just as the brooms are coming out for another round of female empowerment. There is a limit to tolerating this and that limit is rapidly approaching.


The crackdown by the oligarchs on dissidents has had the happy result of a proliferation of new ways to support your favorite creator. If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link.   If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


The Arc Of Trust

In 1980, when Ronald Reagan was running for president, the people planning to vote for him were sure the media was biased against him. They focused only on the bad stuff and ignored the good stuff. The people voting for Jimmy Carter, on the other hand, thought the bias claim was absurd. They thought the media played it as fair as was possible in a matter of opinion. The big media players went out of their way to prove that they were just neutral observers reporting the facts.

It seems quaint today, but if you wrote your local newspaper complaining about unequal treatment, you could expect a reply pointing out the examples in the newspaper of both sides of the debate. If not a direct reply, there would be a length reply in the letters column addressing the issue. Newspaper columnists would often take the time to address the “alleged bias in the media”. Back then, it was important to the media that people thought they were neutral observers.

Fast forward twenty years and the people planning to vote for Bush still thought the media was biased, but by that point, conservatives were so sure of the bias they no longer felt a need to prove it. The center of gravity with regards to the media had shifted after the Clinton years. Even the people who were voting for Gore conceded that many parts of the media were biased, but their new line was that “right-wing” media, like Fox News and Drudge, was just as biased.

In twenty years, we moved from a world in which the consensus was that the media was mostly honest but a little biased to a world in which the consensus was the media was biased in favor of one side. Put another way, a tin foil hat crazy in 1980 thought the New York Times was out to get their guy, while in 2000 a tin foil hat crazy thought Fox News controlled public opinion. By this point, the mass media was no longer trying to prove they were neutral observers.

Twenty years on from the Bush election, everyone to the right of Hillary Clinton looks at the media as the marketing department for the DNC. Further, the only people who think the media is not deliberately lying about everything are the nutters who watch conspiracy outlets like MSNBC or CNN. The most popular “conservative” TV media performer is Tucker Carlson who dedicates a fair chunk of his airtime to pointing out the litany of lies that come from the mass media.

In isolation it is not a very interesting thing, but the media is a canary in the coal mine for the state of the culture. Forty years ago, most people thought they could trust the important institutions of society. Wackos were the ones claiming the government was covering up conspiracies and doing nefarious things in the shadows. The bulk of the population trusted the system, even while acknowledging the flaws. After all, humans are not perfect, so no system is perfect.

Today, the center point on the trust scale is over toward the lack of trust end but it depends upon the institution in question. Few people trust the media, so the center is way over on the skeptical end. Most people think the government is a blend of incompetence and dishonesty, but many still think the system can work with the right people in charge of it. Big business is another institution whose trust has collapsed, especially among right-wing people.

At this point on the timeline, the military, the economy, and technology are the only three institutions that people generally trust. Despite twenty years of failure, people still think the military can defeat any enemy if allowed to do their best. White people still proudly send their sons to fight. That is changing as it becomes clear that the people in charge are rabidly antiwhite and jarringly incompetent. We may be in the midst of a great sea change in white attitudes about the military.

That leaves the economy and technology as the things most people think they can trust to be what they claim. The bad news gets all of the attention, but most people still live pretty well in this country. Inflation and shortages are concerning, but most people accept that it is just temporary and will work itself out in time. Similarly, despite the damage done by the Covidians, people still trust technology to come up with reliable solutions to problems. The vaccination rate is proof of that.

The fact is people can remain content as long as their bellies are full, and they feel secure in their person. The lunacy of the Covid response was annoying, but few people felt it threatened their way of life. People were not being evicted from their homes or going without food. The entertainments were maintained, so they had things to keep them occupied while stuck at home. The Juvenal quote gets overused but that is because it is true. The last two years have proved it.

The question, however, is can a society keep the bread and circuses going when trust in the main institutions is collapsing? Trust in the economic system is a function of its relative performance. If no one trusts the political system or the mass media that promotes it, can we survive a serious economic downturn? Can we survive learning that much of what we were told about Covid was a lie? Can we still trust the economic system when we are ruled by corporate oligarchs?

The point of this is that when you take a long view, relative to a human lifespan, it is hard to see a bright future for the American empire. The arc of trust now bends inexorably toward a world where only fools trust their institutions. The future is a world where no one can trust anything or anyone and the only way to maintain order is through force. If the people at the top of the institutions see it this way, it would explain why they are so enthusiastic for authoritarianism.


The crackdown by the oligarchs on dissidents has had the happy result of a proliferation of new ways to support your favorite creator. If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link.   If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


Crisis Of Culture

Imagine you are interviewing for a job and during the course of the initial interview you learn that the future boss is a big fan of F1 racing. This grabs your attention because you are also a fan of auto racing, especially Formula 1. You mention this to the interviewer who then tells you he is also a big racing fan. He jokes that he got the job because the big boss is a F1 fan. Eventually you get the job and find out that many of your coworkers are race fans, weekend gearheads and so on.

Now, an interest in motorsports has nothing to do with the work of the company or any of the jobs in the company, but the culture of the company, driven in large part by the big boss, has a strong connection with motorsports. Over time, even those with little interest in the hobby get interested because so many people at the company have a strong interest in the topic and talk about it often. As a result, the selection pressure favors gearheads and boils off those who were not gearheads.

This is not an uncommon phenomenon. Every company has a culture, even the largest corporations, and it usually stems from the founding stock of the company. A big part of mergers and acquisitions is to assimilate the acquired company into the culture of the purchasing company. In the case of a genuine merger, one culture eventually dominates the other. Truly merging two cultures is impossible unless they are so close that the differences are superficial.

Something like a company-wide interest in motorsports is a useful way of understanding the much deeper aspects of organizational culture. The sorts of people who into car racing are going to have a set of common personality traits. Race fans will tend to be more risk tolerant and more interested in problem solving. If the big boss was a woman into her church, the company culture would reflect the nature of women who are active in their church. That company would be more conservative.

The culture of an organization is ultimately about how the organism as a whole goes about solving the problems for which the organization was formed. In the case of a company, the primary challenge is profit, but every industry has peculiar challenges when it comes to holding down costs and maximizing sales. The culture of the company evolved to meet those challenges. Successful firms have evolved internal processes upon which it relies to solve these daily issues.

This is important in understanding the nature of a crisis. In business, there are good years and bad years, no matter how well run the firm. The business cycle is immutable, it seems, and it is often industry specific. The firms with a good company culture are built to ride these waves, minimizing losses on the down swing, and maximizing profits on the upswing. The not so well run firms face a crisis in the down years, struggling to hold on, but party like rock stars during the good times.

There are two types of crises. One is the normal challenges that face every organization regardless of its culture. The down times feel like a crisis to the well run business, but they have the tools to manage it, so it is a situational crisis. Getting through it is simply a matter of execution. For the firm lacking a culture prepared to address the down years, the crisis is structural. Their survival does not depend on their execution, because they lack the necessary tools. Instead, it relies on fortune.

Put another way, the crisis that truly threaten the existence of the firm is one with roots that go back to its origin. If in the case of the well-run company the nature of the business changes dramatically, it will face a genuine crisis for which it may not be equipped to solve. It then has a crisis with roots to its founding. The crisis that threatens the viability of an organization is always going to be one that started long before it was noticed and is a symptom of a systemic problem.

This is a useful way of thinking about how the managerial elite of the American empire is prepared for the future. The culture of the elite is, in many respects, a product of a bygone era in the empire. During the Cold War it was a bipolar world, but in reality, it was a unipolar world from the 1970’s until the end. The Soviets had turned conservative and were no longer a realistic ideological threat. The party was just holding onto power by minimizing risk. America was the center of the universe.

What this means is that for a few generations now, the system has been selecting for people who will serve an established system. In the early part of the 20th century, the system selected for creative people, risk takers and those willing to reconsider the old way of doing things. The old order was giving way to a new order. America was on the cusp of becoming a global empire and it needed talent at the top to help reorganize domestically and solve the challenges globally.

In the present crisis, the culture of the ruling class is lacking the tools to address the problems, but it also lacks the sort of people who will look outside the system. It has been selecting for highly conservative people, with respect to the culture of the managerial class, for generations now. It is why the system violently vomited up Donald Trump and continues to dry heave over the memory of him. The culture of the ruling class is built around adversity to change.

The old Hemingway line about bankruptcy is overused, but it reveals the truth about the dynamics of a collapse. In retrospect, the signs were all there, but the modes of thought at the time made it difficult to detect. The collapse of the Soviet Union is a great example of the Hemingway quote. It was happening a little at a time starting with Khrushchev and then happened all of a sudden under Gorbachev. The culture of the system prevented it from meeting the challenges of the age.

This may be what we are seeing today. The culture of the American ruling elite began to adapt to the unipolar world in the 1970’s. That is when the great outsource of the industrial base began as part of the financialization of the economy. It was formalized in the currency arrangements of the 1980’s and has remained static ever since. It is an old system built for an age that no longer exists. The crisis is the conflict between their view of the world and the reality of the world.

It is easy to see that America has a culture problem, but it is not what people think of when they hear the term. It is much deeper than the bourgeois degeneracy we see in the mass media. It is the structure of the ruling class. Their understanding of reality is rooted in a world that no longer exists. Its culture of problem solving is no longer compatible with present reality. Like the poorly run firm hoping to weather a downturn in the business cycle, they are counting on luck to save them.


The crackdown by the oligarchs on dissidents has had the happy result of a proliferation of new ways to support your favorite creator. If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link.   If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


Public Tyranny

Note: The weekly Taki post is up. This week is a return to a topic that cannot be stressed enough, it seems. More important, the editor there insists on using lower case for Left and Right, which seems wrong to me. The word left is a direction, while the word Left is a proper noun for a political philosophy. Clarity seems to require capitalizing these words. There is also the Sunday Thoughts podcast up behind the green door. There are no grammar disputes in this week’s show.


Imagine if all of a sudden you were transported to a place where all of the walls are clear and no one was allowed any clothing, other than that which is completely transparent, like the walls of every structure. Everything about you, even your most intimate habits are on public view. Obviously, this would also mean that everything about everyone else is on public view. Further, your thoughts can be read by anyone and everyone, so that even inside your head is now public.

It makes for an interesting science fiction plot, because for most people such a world would be a nightmare. Even the most freakish exhibitionist has some need for privacy in his life. According to the Bible, the first thing man did when he became self-aware was cover himself. The story of Adam and Eve was created in a time of minimum privacy, yet people at the time understood that there is a natural human need to maintain a domain of life away from public view.

Even though privacy is something that exists to some degree in every settled society, we can be sure that it did not exist before humans settled down together. A group of humans hunting and gathering within a range would have no privacy. They would do everything as a group. Of course, this would have bound them together, as sharing is the nature of human relations. Since these groups were blood relatives, the lack of privacy probably helped them survive in the wild.

What this means is that the concept of privacy probably evolved along with human settlement, which means it is an asset for settled people. Once groups of humans began to cooperate so they could operate in groups larger than the Dunbar number, they must have evolved traits that maintained the small group cohesion, while preventing conflict between groups. The first private moment was one group not sharing what they truly thought of the other group.

It is not hard to see how privacy was an asset for people living in relatively close proximity in small villages. Lots of unrelated males, for example, would be cooperating, but also competing for mates. Similarly, the females would be weaving the social fabric of the village, while keeping an eye on one another to make sure they did not lose their mate to another female. The privacy of home life probably evolved as a way to avoid the poaching of mates within the community.

Even if we put mating aside, the creation of a private domain separate from the public domain is an obvious peacekeeper. In a small group, disputes can be solved by the leader imposing his will on the group. Once you get past a certain number, that is impossible and small disputes could easily become big disputes. The private domain is where Grog can tell the missus what he really thinks of Trog, without creating a feud with him and possible drawing in the whole community.

Another point in favor of the essentialness of privacy in large societies is the fact that authoritarians always seek to violate privacy. The communists, for example, would listen in on citizens and rummage through their lives. For this reason, the Founders put in the Bill of Rights the “right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures.” What constituted reasonable in this context was a direct threat against the security of society.

As a narrow tool of terror, violating the privacy of citizens is effective, but very expensive to maintain, which is one lesson of the Soviets. It is not just the practical cost of mass spying, but the cost to social trust. In a world where anyone can be a conduit for the state to listen in on your life, the willingness to trust strangers drops to zero. The only people you can trust are blood relatives and associates who have everything to lose by violating your trust. Criminal gangs did well under communism.

There is another angle to privacy. Privacy is the key to one’s identity. It’s why militaries march recruits around naked so much in their initial training. Criminal gangs, like some motorcycle clubs, will do the same thing to prospective members. Take away a person’s privacy and they can no longer stand apart from the rest. It’s hard to hold yourself distinct from others when they know even the most intimate things about you, which is why authoritarians love violating the privacy of others.

This may be one key to understanding why modern America appears to be having a nervous breakdown. The microprocessor revolution has had many consequences and not all of them have been good. It has made it cheaper and easier for authoritarians to pry around in the lives of others. Everyone lives in a world where they are tracked by agents of the state, who also act from private interests. They are even trying to tease out our thoughts from our internet activity.

Not only has technology made it easier for the state to violate your privacy, but it also has weaponized the worst elements in every society. People who call themselves “extremist researchers”, for example, are just busybodies encouraged to violate the privacy of their fellow citizens. For most of human settlement, there were rules to keep this type under control, because they endanger social cohesion. The gossip is a greater threat to the whole than any criminal, because they undermine social trust.

There are many things that are causing American society to crumble, but one big one is the inversion of privacy. The lives of citizens are put on display, but the facts of public life are routinely hidden in waves of lies. Activist organizations like CNN threaten to ruin private citizens if they refuse to be props in their charades, but also tirelessly work to prevent the public from knowing the truth about public policy. The collapse of privacy is turning America into a large-scale prison camp.


The crackdown by the oligarchs on dissidents has had the happy result of a proliferation of new ways to support your favorite creator. If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link.   If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


The Limits Of Vampirism

Imagine if tomorrow, the Federal Reserve announced that the top ten home builders in the United States are insolvent. They would cease paying interest on debt and probably would default on principal payments. Further, their bonds would be frozen for some period as the Fed sorted through their finances. It is not too hard to imagine as 13 years ago something close happened when Lehmen Brothers collapsed. It started a long financial panic and then a long recession.

Something similar is now happening in China. The nation’s largest developer is no longer able to pay its creditors. The Chinese government announced yesterday that the firm will not make interest payments and probably will default on principal payments, although that remains unclear. China Evergrande has liabilities over $300 billion, but this is China, so no one knows the real number. All anyone knows is they sit at the heart of the Chinese financial and real estate system.

One thing that is universally true in all times and all places, even in China, is that real estate is the base asset. Mother Nature is not making more of it, so it remains a constant and therefore the basis of all value. It is why this development is not just another story of corrupt financial dealings. As in the West, all land in China is leveraged and that leverage is treated as an asset, which means it is leveraged. If Evergrande stops paying its bill, many other firms stop paying their bills.

At this point, the financial world is not all that concerned with what is happening in Chinese real estate, but they were not concerned about the mortgage crisis in the United States until it was a pending disaster. The old claim that financial markets look forward and therefore offer a glimpse of the future was always nonsense, but the Lehman disaster proved that markets are not the future. The world of finance assumes tomorrow will be yesterday but better.

At the minimum, the Evergrande crisis is a test of the new Chinese model of governance ushered in under Xi Jinping. The relatively loose days of Chinese capitalism are coming to a close as the party imposes new rules on the economy and cracks down on its pirates. The focus is now on domestic growth, rather than cheap labor and exports. China is no longer the cheapest or most productive labor market in the world, so it cannot remain an export economy.

No one really knows if China can successfully make the turn from export economy to one driven by domestic consumption. The breathtaking modernization of the country is impressive, but that required massive cooperation from the West. If the United States had a ruling class concerned with the welfare of the American people, for example, the Chinese miracle never would have occurred. The feckless American ruling class cannot help China transition to a domestic demand driven economy.

The bigger question with regards to China and this current financial crisis is can the Western financial model survive the Chinese transition. For the last thirty years the corrupt Western ruling class has preserved itself like all corrupt ruling classes have done and that is with bread and circuses. The Chinese economic miracle has kept inflation down and money printing up. Cheap goods from China have been an essential part of maintaining stability in the West.

Inflation is already becoming a problem in America. In most parts of the economy, the food markets are plagued with supply chain problems and rising prices. Then there are labor market problems, some of which were created by the Covid panic, but others are the result of demographics. Those Baby Boomers taking early retirement due to the Covid panic are not going to be replaced by the magical people that we see on television shows and commercials.

Of course, the great retirement boom that is just started in the US will put massive strain on programs like Social Security and Medicare. Those programs represent trillions in debt that can never be paid in current dollars. Medicare is now projected to run out of cash in ten years. Social Security has been insolvent for a long time now, based on generally accepted accounting practices. Its assets were spent years ago by the government, leaving it with worthless IOU’s.

People are pointing to the current crisis in China as a replay of the Lehman debacle 13 years ago, but in reality, it is a continuation of it. Starting in the 1980’s, the people actually in charge of the world began to transition the global economy away from an asset based system to a credit based system. The great debt explosion that ensued took many forms and the rise of China was one aspect. Without the massive growth in global debt, China’s growth would have been impossible.

The thing with debt is that it has to eventually be repaid. That means there is a hard limit to the amount of debt that can be generated. A system based on the assumption that debt can expand forever will naturally end in a crisis when that that assumption runs into the reality of the debt limit. In this regard, Lehman, the mortgage crisis and now the Evergrande crisis should be seen as warning tremors. One day soon there will be no way to paper over one of these crises.

Step back and look at what has happened over the last half century and what you see is an effort to mitigate the demographic decline of the West. The reason China was so attractive to the West is she was full of young people. China’s utility to the West is in decline because she is rapidly getting old. The massively complex system that is the Western financial modern is just a way to turn the youth of other societies into cash for the Western welfare state. Their vigor is our safety net.

The trouble is the system drains the vitality of all those exposed to it. Japan was the first example of a formerly fecund society drained of its youth and vitality by exposure to the Western economic model. Korea soon followed. Now we see all of the same signs in China as she nears the end of her economic cycle. The only place left with lots of young people is Africa, but even the scheming of Western elites will never be enough to conquer the dark continent in this way.

In this context, what is happening in China is a sign that the system of endless credit expansion is really the implementation of a system that converts civilizational vigor into cash for a tiny minority. The natural limit on the expansion of credit is set by the limit of young people available to be consumed. China’s future was written in her one child policy and ultimately that would set the end times for the West. Once we run out of kids to convert to credit, the plates stop spinning.


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